Skip to main content

Charles W. Sparkes to Walt Whitman, 21 July 1889

 loc.03722.001_large.jpg Dear Brother,

you who have put in words what I can but feebly put in thoughts, you I know will excuse the liberty I am taking in writing to you. Drawn to you irresistibly I write, satisfied to be in communion with you, even though only in thought and by letter, though ere long I hope to see you face to face, for He, my lover and comrade, lives loc.03722.002_large.jpg in Delaware, and the force of love impels the one to the other. This, though, I have to ask, so ask at once, whether out of your comradeship you would send me one or two roots of Calamus, to be treasured by myself and comrades as dear memorials of the Master-comrade. I make bold to ask this favour, trusting to your Inscription "To You." I have made bold to speak to you, will you fulfil​ your promise and speak to me?


I think of all your wondrous poems, the one that appeals most to me is "The base of all metaphysics," shewing, as it does, the grandeur of the conception of the divine Christian faith in universal love. I am an English Priest, but hope I do not come under your law, for priests can love democracy and mankind. I live among the people in the crowded buildings, I love them all and individual. May universal love soon spread it wings o'er Continents new & old.


To thee I offer my affection, for that is all I can, but may we meet ere long. So long.

Your comrade Charles W. Sparkes.

Very little is known about the English priest Charles W. Sparkes.

Back to top